It is with a heavy heart that we take this time to inform you that we have decided to temporarily pause taking new batches of girls into our residential programme of the Emerge Centre for Reintegration. The Centre will continue to act as a residential safe haven for alumnae during their moments of greatest need. We are – and will always be – our girls’ family. The rest of Emerge Lanka Foundation’s programmes, including our shelter programmes, mentorship, and counselling support, will continue and we will be transforming the Emerge Centre into a drop-in resource for alumnae to access programming and support, as well as a day-time resource for girls transitioning out of shelters.
The decision to temporarily pause upcoming batches was not an easy one. However, due to the impact of the COVID-19, we have decided that this is the best available path for the time being.
The three primary issues we face include:
- Protecting the safety of participants and our team, particularly with the travel and exposure visits that are key to our reintegration model.
- Ensuring the fidelity of our model and quality reintegration results given restrictions in the country and current climate. While Sri Lanka is beginning to open up, there are restrictions on transportation that will directly impact the recruiting of participants and the exposure visits, a main stream of knowledge and practice for the young women we work with. Companies are struggling to get back to work, and many of our partners have had to lay off employees. This is a hard time to do meaningful and safe internships, job site visits, and job placements as companies rebuild their core work.
- The economic impact caused by the COVID-19 has had an effect on Emerge’s funding and we are experiencing uncertainty for our funding in the near future. We are grateful for the many people who have stepped forward in this uncertain time and are committed to reopening residential services when the climate is more stable and we know we have greater financial stability.
With these issues at hand, the Centre functionality has been highly compromised. Therefore, continuation of the programme as it was originally designed has become difficult. We are working tirelessly to re-open the Centre as soon as time allows us to do so.
Emerge Lanka Foundation takes this opportunity to thank each of you for being a part of their journey. It has taken a village to come this far — Thank you to each of our supporters, volunteers, and champions who have made an incredible experience for the 74 young women who have graduated our Centre’s programmes and successfully reintegrated into society.
We are working tirelessly to re-open the Centre to new young women as soon as time allows us to do so and hope that you will continue to support us to make this happen as soon as possible!